Reviews Archives - Page 10 of 85 - The Millions

April 12, 2016

There Is No Redemption Here 1


Kelly Kerney has crafted a story and a set of characters that require her readers to look squarely at what Americans — especially white Americans, the demographic most comfortable in the United States’ myth of moral superiority — will do to maintain our innocence, and what we will do, and have done, in the face of guilt.

April 5, 2016

Origin Stories: The Darker Side of J.R.R. Tolkien 0


The Story of Kullervo, the first known prose work by Tolkien, is to be published this week in the United States, offering fans of Middle Earth a chance to read what may be one of the earliest sources for Tolkien’s quintessential literary fantasy realm.

April 4, 2016

Ms. Lonely: Olivia Laing in the Lonely City 0


At the end of The Lonely City, Laing does not offer up novel “answers,” either to her own loneliness or the reader’s; it’s not clear, even, whether the book feels loneliness is a problem to be solved.

April 1, 2016

The Rise and Fall of the Donald Trump of Detroit 2


Rich Republican outsider with zero political experience and open disdain for government claims he has the business acumen to make [fill in the blank] great again — sound familiar?

March 30, 2016

The Solution Is a Gay Socialist Utopia Built for Two 2


Created on a website, crowd-sourced in serial, Beijing Comrades is the people’s public fantasy of intimacy. The result is a classic of queer consciousness-raising erotica.

March 23, 2016

Men in Tights Crammed into Confined Spaces 1


Bachelder’s portrait of middle-class, middle-aged males revolves around football. Full disclosure: In my version of hell, scowling football coaches pace up and down the River Styx, their steady barking of martial commands only interrupted to consult their laminated sheets on which every possible variation on the off-tackle running play is written.

March 21, 2016

Lighter, Smaller, Thinner: On Lost Girls and Lost Mothers 6


To what should girls aspire when an entire culture, including a culture of smart literary women, values them for how little of them there is?

March 16, 2016

A Hint of the Demonic: Photography as a Dark Art 0


Félix Nadar personifies photography as an avenging angel who, through the accursed image, makes her terrible will known.

March 15, 2016

The Human Deep Within the Machine 0


The coming together of the novel’s two plots is the least compelling aspect of Innocents and Others. Its nod to narrative unity is forced, but the best part about the nod is how convincingly it suggests that we were all better off talking to each other in the dark.

March 9, 2016

The Great Divide Between Science and Literature Is False 2


Diagnosed with a serious illness of his own, Kalanithi found that he needed literary translation of his experiences. When scientific studies and survival statistics offered little, he turned to books: Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Leo Tolstoy, Virginia Woolf. He read memoirs by cancer patients. “It was literature,” he writes, “that brought me back to life during this time.”